bar·​ber | \ˈbär-bər \

Definition of barber 

(Entry 1 of 3)

: one whose business is cutting and dressing hair, shaving and trimming beards, and performing related services


barbered; barbering\ˈbär-​b(ə-​)riŋ \

Definition of barber (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to perform the services of a barber for : trim or groom the hair or beard of

intransitive verb

: to perform the services of a barber


biographical name
Bar·​ber | \ˈbär-bər \

Definition of Barber (Entry 3 of 3)

Samuel 1910–1981 American composer

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Examples of barber in a Sentence


He goes to a barber downtown. went to the barber to get his hair cut and his beard trimmed

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Everyone loves the feeling of a fresh haircut, and one New York barber is winning praise for making accommodations to style a customer's hair outside of his non-wheelchair-accessible shop. Janine Puhak, Fox News, "New York barber goes viral for giving man in wheelchair a haircut outdoors," 21 Sep. 2018 Ryan is also an actress who has appeared in This Is Us before, playing Yvette (the mother at the pool who recommends barbers to Rebecca for young Randall). Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "Ryan Michelle Bathe Had Sterling K. Brown Fawning Over Her at the 2018 Emmys," 17 Sep. 2018 Two on-site market halls totaling 45,000 square feet bring together an exciting offering of the city’s best artisans and makers—there’s a barber, a florist, a brewery, an art gallery, and even a taqueria all within steps of your room. Todd Plummer, Vogue, "Denver’s Coolest Bars, Restaurants, and Shops Are All in This One Neighborhood," 6 Nov. 2018 Colon works a few hours a week at Burger King and her boyfriend works as a barber. Aaron Leibowitz, miamiherald, "Displaced Puerto Ricans can fly home or stay in Florida with no FEMA housing. They're staying.," 30 June 2018 The show begins with the title character getting out of jail and hoping to restart his life, and his career as a barber. Christopher Arnott,, "Terrence Mann Kills It As 'Sweeney Todd' At CT Rep," 26 June 2018 Colón has been able to stay thanks to her boyfriend, who also moved from Puerto Rico after the hurricane and found a job as a barber. Maria Elena Vizcaino,, "Puerto Ricans at risk of homelessness demand Gov. Rick Scott's help," 22 June 2018 In his years as a barber and product developer, Reamir has learned a lot about the importance of scalp care, and how to maintain harmony up top your head. Adam Hurly, GQ, "Here's How to Fix Your Dry, Itchy Scalp," 15 June 2018 Walker's social media profiles showed him to be the owner of a company called Barber Mafia Family, and worked as a barber in the area surrounding the University of Texas at San Antonio, the San Antonio Express-News reported. Matthew Martinez, star-telegram, "Off-duty Texas cop shot six times outside strip club following road rage incident," 30 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Roger Federer, while not infallible, can play when there is barbered grass underfoot. The Si Staff,, "Wimbledon 2018 Preview Roundtable: Predictions, Dark Horses, More," 29 June 2018 Ethos, Jacobs’ barbering biz featuring a traveling grooming station, was born. Elizabeth Wellington,, "A mobile barbershop experience that elevates the culture of the gentleman | Elizabeth Wellington," 21 June 2018 Missouri law requires a training course of 1,000 hours for barbering and 1,500 hours for hairdressing, followed by a licensing exam. Tony Rizzo, kansascity, "African-style hair braiders lose appeal of Missouri licensing law," 11 Jan. 2018 The center offers auto and collision training in several garage bays, a welding shop, a dental lab, a cosmetology and barbering center, graphic arts and a culinary arts program. Carole Carlson, Post-Tribune, "New Gary Career Center director touts plans to fill empty classrooms," 23 Dec. 2017 But barbering was hard on daddy’s feet, and mother was homesick. WSJ, "Wanda Jackson Helped Put the Growl in Rockabilly," 19 Dec. 2017 There are still all kinds of souvenirs and reminders of the two Italian barbers and their customers: postcards stuck into the mirrors, decades of shavers and other barbering gadgetry. Polly Campbell,, "A cut and a cappuccino on Garfield Place: Ferrari Barbershop and Coffee Co.," 12 Oct. 2017 Rosa had secured a job at the Stockton Sewing Company doing piecework and Raymond was barbering again. Jeanne Theoharis, The Root, "The Story of Rosa Parks’ Detroit Home Reveals Hard Truths About Her Life in the ‘Northern Promised Land That Wasn’t’," 7 Sep. 2017 HRC could've set up housekeeping in Fond du Lac for four months and it would've been wasted effort if her base voters had their franchise barbered in a dozen ways. Charles P. Pierce, Esquire, "Let's Call 'Cultural Anxiety' What It Is," 9 May 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'barber.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of barber


14th century, in the meaning defined above


circa 1616, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for barber


Middle English, from Anglo-French barbour, from barbe beard — more at barb

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Dictionary Entries near barber







barber chair

Statistics for barber

Last Updated

10 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for barber

The first known use of barber was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for barber



English Language Learners Definition of barber

: a person whose job is to cut men's hair


bar·​ber | \ˈbär-bər \

Kids Definition of barber

: a person whose business is cutting hair and shaving and trimming beards

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More from Merriam-Webster on barber

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with barber

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for barber

Spanish Central: Translation of barber

Nglish: Translation of barber for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of barber for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about barber

Comments on barber

What made you want to look up barber? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


living or existing for a long time

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